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Tuesday, 15 November 2022

The Gospel in the Home - Georges Chevrot

The Gospel in the Home
Georges Chevrot
Scepter
ISBN 9780906138762
eISBN 9781910644133
ASIN B075S7WW1D


This book was originally published in French in 1951, in 2017 editions were released in translation by Scepter UK and Scepter US. There is no indication who the translator was. I have read The Prodigal Son a few times and loved it, and have read The Well of Life, but can find few of his works available in English. A few others are starting to show up, and for that I am very thankful. Each of the books I have read by Chevrot could easily become Christian, or at least Catholic Classics. The description of this volume is:

“The Gospel in the Home is a series of radio talks broadcast by Monsignor Chevrot in 1951. It was first published in French in that year. Based on texts from the Gospel, each chapter teases out considerations which are as relevant for developing family life and improving personal relationships in the home today, as when they were first broadcast.”

Much like C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity as indicated above this volume is based on a series of radio broadcasts. Based on content we can discern when some of them originally aired. And they span the church year. The specific talks/chapters are:
  1. The house built on rock
  2. The woman who makes bread in her home
  3. An inventory of the cupboards
  4. The lamp under a bushel
  5. The lamp in the lampstand
  6. They call at the door
  7. The father’s home
  8. The house in mourning
  9. The well-guarded house 
  10. Mealtimes 
  11. The best moment 
  12. The goblet and the plate 
  13. The moment for prayer 
  14. The child is hungry 
  15. Beside the cradle 
  16. Invitations to dinner 
  17. The Holy Family in Nazareth 
  18. As the children grow 
  19. The age of ingratitude 
  20. The wedding at Cana 
  21. As the spouses grow old 
  22. The salt which has become insipid 
  23. Within Christ’s hearing 
  24. The woman who swept her house 
  25. The servant whose work never finishes 
  26. The landlord returns home 
  27. The Lord’s Supper 
  28. In the house of Cleophas

Prior to the text of the book we are informed about the author that:

“Georges Chevrot was born in 1879 in Paris, where he died on 4 February 1958. Ordained in 1903, he held various pastoral ministries in the diocese. He was appointed curate of St Francis Xavier Church, where he remained until his death. 

A man of deep inner life, an acute and intelligent observer, he was a priest totally dedicated to his ministry, refusing all honorary titles out of humility. Having the gift of also being a brilliant speaker, he was invited by several bishops to lead diocesan retreats throughout France. Cardinal Verdier appointed him to be the Lenten preacher at the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in 1938, 1939 and 1940.

He was appointed Canon Emeritus in 1933 and prelate of His Holiness in 1939. During the occupation, he worked for the Resistance for the independence of France. He was elected member of the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences in 1947.

 Among his works published in English are Our Mass, Simon Peter, On the Third Day, The Prodigal Son, The Well of Life, The Eight Beatitudes. The Gospel in the Home was a series of radio talks broadcast in 1951.”

I only highlighted a few passages my first time through this book. Two that stand out to me are:

“The action of the Gospel on men has to continue without pause: it really has to start again within each person in particular.”

And:

“To summarize: the minority which Christians form in the world can and ought to have an influence on public opinion. The handful of Christians which we are, can and ought to straighten out and to renew our country.”

I will admit this book was more effort than the previous two by the author I have read. It part, it may be the format in that these are 28 different talks, and even the transcript format of the talks. In part it could be the translator. But even with it taking more effort this was a most excellent read. A volume I was blessed to have read and one I know I will return to again. Because of the style of this book, you can read it from beginning to end, or randomly pick chapters to read as they grab your interest. I believe the book would greatly benefit from an index, maybe in a future reprint.

This book is a great little read. And I can only hope that Scepter bring back to print his other titles in English. I can easily recommend this volume. 

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2022 Catholic Reading Plan!

Books by Georges Chevrot available in English:
On the Third Day
Simon Peter
The Eight Beatitudes
The Gospel in the Home
The Prodigal Son
The Well of Life






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